Toronto Food Policy Council
In 1988, it was recognized that the City of Toronto required a local food policy council to inform City Council on food issues and comprehensively address hunger and poverty. The Toronto Food Policy Council (TFPC) was first established in 1991, as a subcommittee of the Toronto Board of Health, to advise the City of Toronto on food policy issues. The TFPC is now administratively situated within Toronto Public Health.
The TFPC provides an opportunity for action across the food system. TFPC members identify emerging food issues that will impact Torontonians, promote food system innovation, and facilitate food policy development. The TFPC works closely with Toronto Public Health’s Food Strategy team as a community reference group, with a focus on identifying emerging issues, facilitating linkages between the community, Toronto Public Health and City Divisions, and advising the food strategy team on their implementation process.
TFPC proudly supports the Toronto Youth Food Policy Council (TYFPC), which provides youth with a space to engage, network, and learn from one another. The TYFPC has two permanent Youth seats on the TFPC.
The TFPC has up to 30 members, along with 1 full-time coordinator. Members include individuals from the Board of Health, City Councillors, the Toronto Youth Food Policy Council and individuals from farming communities in the Greater Toronto Area. 22 citizen members representing diverse food sectors also sit on the council. Members are appointed for three-year terms.
- In partnership with Sustain Ontario, TFPC advocates for good food policies and a Local Food Act in Ontario.
- TFPC has provided support for the Greater Golden Horseshoe Farm and Food Action Plan, which received endorsement from City Council.
- The TFPC and Food Strategy team partnered with Niagara-based Vineland Research and Innovation Centre to work on the “Feeding Diversity” project. A January 2012 report entitled, Feeding Diversity: Community Access and Commercialization of World Crops, identifies strategies to make culturally appropriate vegetables more widely available in Toronto’s underserved neighbourhoods, and aims to ultimately substitute these often imported products with locally grown versions.
- TFPC has been involved in the development of the GrowTO Urban Agriculture Action Plan. The plan was endorsed unanimously by Toronto City Council on November 27th, 2012.
- The TFPC advocates for the expansion of street food options in Toronto and for creating new opportunities for new vendors and food trucks.
- The TFPC advocates for appropriate food waste management through promotion of mid-scale composting operation allowance within the City of Toronto. A report is under development on City of Toronto food waste, to address household and commercial food waste.
- The TFPC has been involved in the production of a Soil Assessment Guide and a Growing and Selling Guide for individuals interested in urban agriculture enterprises within the City of Toronto.